A motorcyclist is injured after a strike by an autonomous vehicle

One of the first of what's sure to be many lawsuits has been filed against the autonomous car manufacturer, General Motors (GM). A San Francisco motorcyclist just filed a lawsuit in federal court during the penultimate week in January for what it claims is the auto manufacturing giant's negligent operation of its Cruise autonomous vehicle (AV).

According to the filing, the man had apparently been riding his motorbike along a street in San Francisco just last month when the vehicle abruptly failed to change lanes. Instead of doing so, the remotely operated vehicle swerved back into the lane the motorcyclist had been riding in, striking him in the process. The impact of the crash caused him to quickly fall to the ground.

An investigation into the crash showed that the car was being self-driven when it struck the motorcyclist. There was, however, a GM employee sitting behind the wheel of the car when it happened. He apparently didn't make any attempt to take over control of the vehicle as the crash seemed imminent.

Although there have been over 50 reported crashes between AVs and other driver-operated vehicles that have been logged in California since 2014, they've all been said to have involved only minor injuries. This is the first case on record in which more serious injuries have resulted from such as crash. The injuries the motorcyclist was left with apparently made it difficult for him to attend work for an extended period of time.

As for the motorcyclist struck by GM's Cruise, it's likely that his lawsuit will set a precedent for how future cases involving crashes between driver-operated automobiles and AVs will be handled in the state.

If you've been seriously injured in a crash due to someone else's suspected negligence, then a Vista motorcycle accident attorney can advise you of your right to file an injury lawsuit in your case.

Source: The Washington Post, "After crash, injured motorcyclist accuses robot-driven vehicle of ‘negligent driving’," Peter Holley, Jan. 25, 2018

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